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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  September 4, 2009 9:00am-12:00pm EDT

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identified by the management side and employer community. the unions went after george mcgovern his many of you are old enou to remember. in deference to george i want to read -- it is interesting with return code. pending legislation is a disturbing, un democratic overreach, that legislation is call the employee free choice act. i am sad to say it runs counter to ideals that were once at the core of the movement. workers would lose their freedom to express their freedom in private, the right to make a decision without anyone peering over their shoulder free from
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fear of reprisal. even on arbiation, mr. mcgovernment compulsory arbitration, was the government is dictating to employees what they will win or lose in the deal with no opportunity to approve the agreement, watch employees pay union dues to get such a contract? for the employment choice act. i do not believe the votes will be there. it is just a question of time of actually educating policy decision makers so they know what is in the bill. employee free choice act is out there. it appears that the majority it is not moving until the free choice act is done with. there is an expansion of family medical leave to ocean reform, to plant-closing laws. there is a myriad of other issues such as eliminating
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binding arbitration. the common theme through all these bills is, again, no it's not really how should we help employers comply with the law. the common theme is employers are bad, let's increase damages, let's destroy damages, let's maket easier for the trial bar to file class action lawsuits, greater civil penalties, etc. and i think it's worth reminding people, which is why these posters are up here on the left, in case you were wondering, how complex our laws are here. that's one page o of code of federal regulations and this is a typical book of the code of federal regulations, this is one book of 90 or 100 that employers thus figure out how to comply with. so when i see the department of labor talking, let's have enforcement against employers and you see the new laws on capitol hill, it's worth reminding people in the real world, employers don't have
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millions of dollars to hire lawyers to figure out every page of the code of federal regulationsn every sentence in that page. there was a time under somal stations where we recognized -- under some administrations where we recognized there was a need and perhaps a moral obligation to help employers, particularly smaller employers to comply with the law through outreach programs etc. i'm hoping we'll see some of that in this administration, i'm hoping we'll see that on capitol hill, but i don't really see any of that now. the common theme depend is we have a lot of laws on the books, let's go after employers and just figure out where we can catch them on some violation. this is matter of great concern to the u.s. chamber, and certainly when we are talking about alternatives and compromises, we will be revisiting that theme in the sense of look, the reality of this, gs, is that no one can really complwith all provisions of the law, particularly small business. it's simply too complicated, so instead of a got you, let's go after them mentality, how about
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helping small businesses understand the law through some sort of voluntary compliance programs. before i leave, i do have to note that the enforcement budget of the department of labor have been increased exponentially. the one area we s reductions is under the labor management and reporting acts, which has cut the budget that enforces the law against union leadership to protect union members. as many of you remember back in the 1950's, there were a great many -- well, presumably all of us don't remember that actually, including me, maybe marty, but under bobby kennedy actually, but many hrings, going into union corruption, and coercion of the union members, and the need to create a law that protects uon members from the excesses of union leadership, that's call the labor management point of disclosure acts it's enforced by the department of labor. ironically, that's the one
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budget that is being cut by this department of labor. i'll leave it up to you to surmise were that is. the department is also engaged in rule making now, which is obviously directed hat reducing the reporting requirements of unions in this entire area, making it frankly more difficult for union leaders or union members to know what the union leadership is doing if terms of spending their money. and we're going -- we have commented on those of course and we will follow that close limit just to mention on health care, small issue on capitol hill, there's some testimony in your packet, where i testified if front of the ways and means committee, i think that kind of lays out the basics of the chamber position. obviously you know the prose is going to give a speech, i guess next wee and we'll see if that reshapes whe things are or not, our concerns with the bill have been fairly clear, and we've not hidden this on capitol hill. one is the employer mandate. when the house -- when the house -- the house bill says, you as an employer, except for
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the very smallest employers, must provide a qualified health care plan, qualified is defined by the federal government, both in the bill and by a board yet to be created, you have to provide that little of benefits or pay a fine of 8% of your payroll, to the federal government. we have concerns. 8% of your payroll, someone making $40,000 a yr, how much is that? that's a $3,200 tax on each person making $40,000 or you do the math, it's easy. that can add up pretty quickly, particularly for a small business guy. why shouldn't all employers have to participate? not all employers can do that, particularly small staup businesses. as i mentioned, the employer community is already kicking in $500 billion worth of health care contributions, and we think we're already doing our fair share. many studies have come out on this so-called employer mandate, including the cbo. invariablely they conclude that
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a tax suchs this will not only lead to slower job growth but job elimination. that is mentioned in my testimony. there's really no argument on that basis. now with regard to the so-called public option, which has gotten probably more attention in the press, we will see where the president goes on that. i think the grassroots on that has been varied tremendously, fairly -- mostly in hop significance, but it depends which poll you read there's so much in the press these days. our concern is public option government supported has an unfair advantage over the previous sector and will eventually drive out private sector insurers. again, the lewen study found that some 88 million workers would move to the public sector option and other studies have documented the clear costing that occurs between public sector plans such as medicare and private sending tore plans,
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meaning, private sector plans will always have more expensive premiums and t public sector will always have an unfair advantage. where are we going to go on health care? my view of it is the path is fairly clear, the president ought to come back in, admit that we were trying to do too much, too soon. peop are scared about what they're hearing on capitol hill. it's not that they necessarily know what's going on on capitol hill, but they're scared. i was on the hill when we go the hillary -- when hillary clinton came up and presented her plan to corning i was at the hearings, -- to congress, i was at the hearings, she was mh criticized for hiding the ball at the time as you will recall, but if fact, i would say what that process back in 1994 was a model of transparency, as compared to what we saw on capitol hill over the last six months. so it's fortunate that the process has been slowed down. it fortunate i think for the house -- for those in power in the house that the bill did not go to the floor in august, so that the american public has had time to weigh in. but hopefully the prose will
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catholic church in with a -- president will come in with a proposal of some sort that is paired down and we can come together over a package that's slimmer, more understandable, and move on to otr issues, hopefully not the employer choice act, so maybe we shouldn't resolve health care, but i think he has his hands full, dealing with obviously the far left, but seems to me, the public has pretty much made it clear, they recognize there's a problem, hey, we're fairly happy with our health insurance, and don't mess it up. and it's hard to believe that message has not gotten through to the white house and people on capitol hill. i want to mention quickly on immigration reform, we traditionally do work closely with the unions. we certainly are still hopeful about passage of a comprehensive immigration reform the next two years. we do have some disagreementing over the unions, over temporary worker programs. but clearly there is a need, i
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think, as you look at the demographics over the long term for greater immigration, some solution to the undocumented in this country, and we certainly hope congress will take that up in the next two years and we hope to work with the unions on that issue. thank you. >> i think it's your turn now. do you have any questions on anything that randy said or anything that i have said? we'll start over there and work right across. >> al from ame. at have you found out this year about businesses failing to meet theirailure? i suppose your members mostlyo not voluarily reveal how much they may be struggling to meet all their obligations. but in my own situation, as administrator of contracts, i'm still waiting to be paid on
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contract work i've done from january. >> all of that is anecdotal and anecdotal information isn't bad, it's just hard to organize. the anecdotal information we've got is that as the economy has gone if to this severe downturn, that it's been harder for people to pay bills, and that in fact, we've heard stories of loan -- we've seen the loan delinquency data rise, not just the mortgage loan delinquency data, but other business loan delinquencies are also up. loan loss reserves at commercial banks are up, so the hard data that we have on that, you know, indicates and tends to support the anecdotal data that it's become harder and harder to make ends meet in an economy where there are fewer and fewer customers, and the customers that you do have are spending less and less. some we're hopeful that with the economy beginning to improve, that those stories kind ofeak
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and recede as we go forward. but wh the slowness of the economic growth, i'm afraid that we're going to continue to hear of problems that ongoing businesses have, meeting their commitments, because of the weak economy. >> regarding the s curve, you said the future is about $500 billion for health care costs. narrow that down to small mid-size comnies. wouldn't the government option benefit those small to mid-sized companies thatre straine by having extensive health care plan or providing coverage? >> well i think it would depend how it would be structured. we don't take these positions. a good percentage, probably 90% of the chamber is actually comprised of small businesses,
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and i think that generally speaking, our members would not -- knowing the devil they know rather than the devil they don't, would rather continue to work withhe current market, combined with some of these current market -- these insuranc market reforms we're seeing, such as guaranteed issuance, no limitation on exclusion for preexisting conditions. perhaps with a gateway of sorts, which i think we ollav grow with in concept. a federal sort of web site that would help small businesses go to one place to shop for the best deal, which is characteristic in all of these bims. combined with, look, some sort of subsidies for small businesses that can't afford insurance. i tnk in other words, our membership would rather sort of try and get to your point through some of these smaller little ideas, rather than take a chance on the creation of 1078 new unknown behemoth, which we're not quite sure how it would work, so there's other
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ways of getting towards how can we subsidize the purchases of insurance for small businesses or help them purchase insurance rather than sort of the creation of this new unknown. the other part of course of this is the employer mandate and you know, we see these as sort of a package and clearly, even with the exception, small businesses have continued to resist, you know, any sortf new employer mandate. >> given that you think jobs are going to lag in this recovery, do you think the administration and members of congress will become more amenable to your concerns about all these labor-related issues that you say will hinder job growth or curb job loss and do you think, from your perspective, educationble, if that's a word, on these issues, or do you think they're so locked in to -- >> i think in reality, a lot
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of -- some of the reasons the employer free choice act was slowed down for a couple of months, was because of the economy. and we did come out with some studies associated with job loss, related t the employer free choice act, but ken to your point, people understand, this is not the time to create a lot -- to heap new lawyers on employers, which in turn create uncertainty with regard 0 what is -- how are those new laws gointo impact the bottom line, so it does help hour argument on capitol hill, with the cluster of 40 to 45 conservative democrats, and probably 10 in the senate, but of course, those are key votes. i think there's a lot of stuff though backed up, and do i think the traditional allies of the democratic party are going to wait forever, which in this case, i will call them, unions and time lawyers. the answer is no. so it's bought us some time, but i think we're still looking at some reel sweeping changes to our nation's employment laws down the road.
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>> i think that, you know, in a macro economic sense, if uplook at what's happening in the economy, a very weak economy hand then you superimpose the budget issuers the debt issues, one thing i had a slide on but didn't cover specifically was the fact that the projected debt levels are going from around 40 to 44% to 2008, projected up to over 80% by 2019. these are unsustainable debt increases, debt level deficits, and to the extent thayou have to address the deficit, it has to be done in kind of two ways. there has to be spending restraint, and there has to be economic growth. you cannot, cannot balance the budget by raising rates without making sure that you have a base to apply that rate to. so in fact, we've seen, efor must increases in revenues over
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the 2001-2008 period. when we actually had declines in rates, but we had stronger growth. and so the thing that i think congress is going to have to come to grips with, is on the one hand, if we have a health care policy, or an energy poli policy, that does not cut cost, and it has been suggested that the health care system would not, bco's analysis, not our -- cbo's analysis, not ours, then you are addressing the spending restraint side of it and to the extent you have a weak economy because those types of policies, you get a double whammy on the budget. in fact, the analysis i've seen, even of the recent adjustments that omb has made to its assumptions, which now call for $9 trillion deficit, understate the te cost of health care and understate the true cost of the energy policy, just to mention two of the big pieces.
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so i think in a macro sense, more congressmen and women are seeing the dynamic, where we have to have economic growth to generate revenue growth and we have to do things that will foster that growth, and at the same time, we have to do things that will control spending. and how much each one focuses on any one given, you know, given idea, is virtually impossible t say, but i think the general conception of these twin problems is out there, and i think that as we see these bigger deficit numbers come in, and as we will see some of the negative impact from these bigger deficit numbers in the not too distant future, there will be more and more concern about that as well. >> kevin hall. >> the -- i was going to ask you a big picture question.
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the -- we're coming up on the anniversary this months of several big changes in our financial system. help us think a little bit about what a new normal is going to be. you laid out clearly consumption is going to be depssed, wage growth is going to be suppressed. you're looking at a flat period, some people talked about we don't gep back until 2014 to a job picture where we were. what is the new normal? the roaring 1920's were gone, psychological changes. is it overstating to say there's going to be a significantly new normal? >> i think, you know, there's always a new normal everybody likes to coin the phrase and so they, you know, they talk about it, what are we going to see this time around. i don't think we're going to see an american consumer that tries to morphed themselves if to the japanese favor that we have seen in the past, ok. but i do think there's going to be an attempt by the american he consumer to be somewhat more judicious in terms of the
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spending, and to try and gradually get its balance sheets in order. now the consumebalance sheet can be brought into order if they -- if they curtail their borrowing, not necessarily if they save out of their current income. so i think that we see higher saving rates, we've seen saving rates jump up to 5% or 6%, from what was negative operates if a year ago. i would not expect us to go back to the negative rates, but i would not expect us to stay at the 5%, so the new norm is somewhat more saving and a gradual repairing, you know, of the balance sheet. what does that mean in terms of g.d.p. growth? i think it means that we probably see potential rates of growth tt are in the 2 to 2.5 range or maybe even the high 1.8, 1.9, something like that, rather than 3 or 3 plus, which is what we thought it was, and indeed, what it was, say, back
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in the late 1990's and in the first seven or eight years of this decade, so it is a movement to a slower growth economy, but i don't think it's a stark move. i don't think it's an abrupt move. i think that what we have seen during the recession he is not the new norm. what we saw prior to the recession will not be the new norm. it's going to be somewhere between that and i think that's the best that you can do n terms of, you know, know cussing on a question. it's an important question. we'll all be watching it to see. but we have seen people begin to spend. look at the cash for clunkers deal. you put a little bit of an incentive and it is a relatively little incentive, because it didn't apply to all the vehicles, it only applied to vehicles that had these gas mileage constraints and look what it did. in a month, it kicked up the sales rate to 14.1 million units, which was well above what
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anybody thought. now we don't have it anymore, we'll see what it goes back to next mth, but there were people ready to buy and we've seen the same thing in the housing market, where the bottoming of the housing market has given rise to additional sales in bows existing and new homes, and so those people weren't, you know, afraid to step back in. so i think that where we make the mistake is to look at what was actually happening during the depths of the recession and say, well, that's going to be the new norm. i don't think that's the case. but we're not going back to where we were an@ we're certainly not going to see the fringe markets and the fringe credits, the people that really shouldn't be borrowing to buy a car, the people that don't have the financial wherewithal to buy a new car getting credit at zero rates of interest. yes, sir. >> good morning. i have a question to you. now, the federal reserve has indicated on a number of occasions, that it intends to keep the current interest rate for an extended period of time.
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but today, charli the federal re bank said they believe the interest rate should be raised very quickly, and so i would like to know how you see the chance that the federal reserve would increase the interest rate -- >> well, when i was at the board, we always enjoyed it immensely when one of the regional fed presidents, you know, gave a sech that had a policy directive considerably different from what was coming out of the board. i also saw bill did you doily on i think it was cnbc, steve leiser did an interview and in that interview, he talked about how they were going to maintain the interest operate policy, probably for some indefinite period. and that they felt that they could control the liquidity, the balance sheet issue and how to back out of the balance sheet
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issue through some tools like payment of interest on recertificate he was, that they could keep the banks from helping out the reserves and increasing the money supply and generating inflationary pressures by increasing the terest rate that they had on reserves or by unwinding some of the borrowings that they conducted, which were done with repurchase agreements and with other short-term borrowing, so that they would have a natural end single payer to unwind, -- tendency to rewind and they would have to reup, rather than just stay out there. so i think there is a disagreement, modest disagreement, amongst some of the members of the fomc and there are some more hawk-ish members that would, you know, like to see some more aggress he retrenchment on the part of the fed, as well as some less hawkish members. i don't think there's any real doves, but let's hawkish members hand this is what gives the dynamic to the fed and it's a good thing, because you don't want the fed in group think.
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this is a group that we have entrusted to conduct monetary policy. they do it in a relative independent manner and you want there to be a little bit of discussion at these fomc meetings, they're not to be rubber stamp meetings and i think what you're seeing in the different tome from bill dudley or mr. plasser, that dynamic hat work, so i don't see had as a negative, i see as a positive. i take the lead from where chairman bernanke is going and what he has said and he has said that he sees the need for coinued monetary accommodation, to be relatively important, and that he is moving in that direction, although he is cognizant of the fact that at some points, he's going to have to pull it back. i see a bigger issue out there hand it's not thessue between what the president of t philadelphia or the pittsburgh
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or the st. louis board thinks. it's what the group as a whoa thinks and the administration thinks because the president says he's going to reappoint him. there will be some discussions in congress, but i have think the congress will confirm the reappointment. and then the question is, when the fed starts to pull this back, and apt some point, they will. maybe the middle of next year, maybe a little sooner, and at that point,he administration is going to be looking at a situation where the fed is slowing down g.d.p. growth, in order to keep control of the situation, and that slowing g.d.p. growth is going to mean that revenue growth does not return to a normal path as quickly has it otherwise would and at that point, you will see the traditional sides form, between the administration that generally leans to the side of more growth, and that's not a partisan statement. i mean, bush the first had great
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rs with the fed over restrictive monetary policy veus aggressive monetary policy and i think we'll see that natural antagonism grow a little bit over the course of the next year, and i think that will be much more important than the internal discussions at the fed. >> martin mentioned earlier the possibility of the economy back sliding in the second half of 2010. would that be more of a slowdown in g.d.p. growth or an actual -- >> it would be more of a slowdown in g.d.p. growth, but the problem is with you're rung your g.d.p. growth at or below potential, you're only a hair's breath away from another presession, ok? i mean, the closer you get, to any kind of strainous shock, -- ex trainous shock to the economy, can tip you back in, so do we slide back into presession? that's not my forecast, but i
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think the probability or the possibility is certainly there. and the probability is not inconsequential. i think that we have the potential for a double dip recession. i think we could see that occur in either of two ways. either the fed is overly aggressive in their tightening, and about the same time that the stimulus is wearing out, we then see high budget deficits, somewhat higher interest rates because of that, and a fed that is very concerned about potential inflation, and pulls back a little bit too quickly. that could tip you into recession. on the other hand, f you go into the middle of next year and the economy is doing quite well, doing better than normal, you still have the economic stimulus in train, you still have some of that coming on line and you start to see the economy hit its stride and what happens in that particular environment? well, the money supply that has been injected into the system starts to create more trance
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acts and those -- transactions and those transactions work on a lower product base, so you have too much money as it were chasing too few goods. the fed doesn't purple the money back fast enough, and you start to get inflation. when that happens, inflationary expectations build. if you have higher interest rates, and those higher interest rates could trigger an economic decline. so you're walking a tight rope at this point, and as long as the economy is growing, you know, at or slightly of above its potential, you've got a little bit of leeway, so you have some wiggle room. but when you start to grow at those slower rates, when some of the artificial stimulus is pulled back and you're expecting the economy to run on its own, you still have weak investment and that sort of stuff, you get -- it gets very temperamental and in those types of situations, a little overaggression or underaggression can produce in either case, an economic downturn, s we're not out of the possible w, double dip recession an we really won't
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know whether we are until probably the middle of next year. >> you haven't talked about financial services reform in the bomb administration. >> -- obama administration. >> i didn't know if you guys had a couple of hours. financial services reform is definitely on the plate. our center for capital markets, for competitive capital markets, that addresses, you know, those issues, they're currently, you know, looking at some of the reform proposals. i think ones that sound somewhat worse to us at this point are things that look at the, you know, providing a new consume are protection agency. i think it's interesting, there isn't one government entity out there, regulatory entity, that thinks that's necessary. now, i don't know how that plays with y'all, that that's suggestive that it is necessary horsuggested that it isn't, but this is something thas come out of the administration and every single one of the administrations' regulatory
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agencies has basically said they don't like it and i think that there's a lot not to like about that policy. i don't think it would akeefe what its aimed at achieving. i think elsewhere in the regulatory framework, we're going to have to learn that companies are going to have to -- in that area, have to run with more rather than somewhat less capital and i think the overleveraged in some of the areas allowed the situation to get out of hand and i think the fed honestly and others that dealt with that at the treasury honestly believed that, you know, you have to have somewhat -- you have to control the leverage, you have to have somewhat more capital. you have to be playing with your own money, that focuses your attention, and forces you to take account of the risk that's out there. beyond that, overregulation would be again, a real problem and something that would stimey the availability of credit in this country and we will run on credit and continue to r on credit, so if we have institutions that are restricted from appropriately evaluating an
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measuring credit, then you're not going to get the return to a more normal functioning economy. and so it's going to be tight rope there as well. and i think that you know, we haven't seen detailed proposals. we've seen an administration outline, we'veeard some the congressional individuals that will be involved in that proce process. make a few comments about some of the piece, but we've really not seen a comprehensive plan and even the way the ministration's plan was unfolded, it was a piece at time. and i think that -- i think it's clear we have too many bank regulators from an economist's point of view, but when i was working at a bank and i was a bank executive, i thought my regulator was good and everybody else was crazy. and i didn't want the other guys regulated, and so there was a very proprietary feeling. my regulator was my regulator andy understood my problems, and
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i could work with him, and he didn't always agree with me he or she didn't always agree with me, but the fact was, i had some rappaport there and i thi there was a real fear of getting away from that, and so one of the things that you look at is this hodgepodge of bank regulation. you've got the comptroller, the fed, the fdic, you have state bank regulators, you know, you've got individual insurance regulators at the at a time level, and these institutions all interact and all cross over, and so it's hard to draw distinct line between where the beige -- part of the bank ends and the, you know, the underwriting part of the bank begins. and we don't have an investment banking system, so the old kind dissidences about commercial -- dtinctions about commercial and a financial entity aren't there anymore. and a lot of these things, i mean, as randy alluded to with the -- with the one labor
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standards act that hasn' been amended since 1947 you said, we haven't -- you know, we had gram leach bliel that took 10 years to hammer out hand that was a less than perfect comomise hand now we're going to sit down and we're going to toss that out, you know, and it's 10 years old, or a little less than that, i guess, and we're going to toss that out ando down this road again. i mean, i thi there's a lot of areas where we saw real oblems, you think the credit rating issue is a real problem, it's still out there, that has to be addressed. there's a lot of moral hazard in that, because you pay for your credit rating the same way you pay for your auditor and we've seen that cause problems, but whether they're going to be able to get their harms around it or not really in part depends upon whether a good many of randy's issues, which sit a little higher on the congressional totem pole, whether they get handled and how much time that we have to do this, but clearly, a potential for overregulation
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while at the same time, a clear understanding that the current level of regulation didn't cut it. >> i just was in london this weekend, g-20 meetings, and pittsburgh as wel there was talks of executive compensations, regulations there, and could you elaborate a little more on why you're opposed to it and -- >> mr. skwrao: i'm opposed to what? because i haven't said we're opposed to anything except the consume are protection agency. >> first of all, maybe we'll start from that, and if you have any -- >> ok, basically we're opposed to that because one we don't think it's necessary. ok. we don't think that the consumer -- that the lac of consume are protections was what caed this economic downturn, ok? many, man people that got mortgages that they couldn't afford to pay, didn't get those
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mortgages because they were duped no to it. -- into it. in many cases, many of these loans got theerm liar's loan, not because the bank lied to them, but because the individual lied to the bank. and the bank didn't do the due diligence make sure -- not the bank, but the broker in many cases, didn't do the due diligence, so you know, going out and raising a straw man problem and then addressing it in a less than standard -- a less than appropriate way, we don't think is good public policy. we don't think layering on it, the broad brush of of the proposed consume are protection agency would virtual my allow them to go into even small businesses that have an accous receivable and tell them, well, you know,eally, that's a loan, and it is. when you have an account receivable, the institution has floated you a loan and in many cases, my dad ran a drugstore. we didn't consider ourselves a bank. we were a pharmacy.
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and we sent out a bill at the end of the month that said please pay for your prescriptions. if you were to do that under this consumer protection agency, we would be considered extending credit. we don't think that's an appropriate function for a consume are protection agency to get into that level of a business that is not in any sense, in any te sense, making a loan, but it's really just, you know, handling kind of a very short-term financial issue. but technically speaking, they would. so these arest reasons we, you kfow, we've opposed that. in terms of the broader, you know, discussions, we're not opposed -- we haven't opposed anything out there. we've in fact supported it, consolidations, we've supported some level of agreement among inrnational regulators. so that the regulations that are imposed are consistent in a broad international market, so those kind of things we haven't
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opposed at all, but we also haven't gone out and approved something that is essentially a pig and a poke. if you can tell me specifically what'c been imposed in any of these areas, i'll be happy to give awe specific answer, but i think it's one of the problems that we've had a lot of very nebulous proposals. we haven't had a health care proposal in the financial regulatory area yet. we've had a broad outline put out there and a broad outline leaves all the details out and in this case, the devil is really in the details, so at this points, we have not -- we have not supported or opposed many of these pieces. >> how about the expected compensation -- executive compensation. >> the significant testify compensation thing, -- executive compensation thing, there's no doubt there's been egregious cases of executive compensation. ok. that having been said, as an economist and as someone who represents businesses, that is a decision that should be made by boards, by boards of detectors,
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ok. this is a business decision, what people get paid. it's not a government decision. the government doesn't have to like what the bonuses are, ok, because it's the system that determines them. now these have been determined, yo know, absolutely correctly in hall cases? no. absolutely not. but by the same token, to suggest that the government's coensation, one size fits all, would be a better approach, is ridiculous. so at this point, you kno we recognize the failure of some of the private secr compensation mechanisms. but at the same time, t suggestion that you impose a government limit on everything, is absolutely ridiculous. and you know, the minute they start imposing government limits on a-rod's salary beings then we'll hear what the american people really thinks about all this stuff ok. you can go down a lot of other areas other than corporate executive compensation in
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america and find cases egregious payment and i don't see any of those guys giving their bonuses back because they hit .226 and struck out four times with runners in scoring position. >> that sort of avoids the point of executive compensation, which is if a-rod takes a hit in money, there's no risk to the broader -- [inaudible] has accepted risk and therefore put the financial system at risk and the government had to rescue it. that's the rational for why there's -- rationale for why there's government action. >> in the cases where the government has taken ownership positions, they have exercised those ownership positions to put certai compensation limits in place. in a few plates, they didn't put them in place, and then afterwards, they wanted to go back kind of retroactively put them in place. the aig case in particular.
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so they got it wrong. ok? they got it wrong, by their own admission, although they haven't made that admission yet, but the fact of the matter is, they put things in place that they were later admitted didn't do what they wanted them to do. in other cases, where they have put executive compensation limits and they have run them down into the mid level of the company, they have found that those companies are now devoid of the financial talent that they really need to recover. and so they have recognized that, and they've actually talked about it, because they recognize the fact that if you have people getting compensated for theame activity, a greater amount in one area, not in the other area where it's limited, yo will have a flow of talent fr the limited area to the unmited area, so the question is, what is the appropriate policy for compensation? and i think the appropriate policys toave the private
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sector set these compensation limits. now if the government has to come in and rescue them, then the government -- you play with the government's money, the government gets to set the rule but with you're playing primarily with your own money and i'm not talking about things like banks where they're regulated entities, but they are regulated private entities, as being different from entities that are in a sense, owned and operated by the government. but the one thing i was interested with the press response was, when the aig bonuses came out, there was a vilification in the press, when the same week, the same week the fanniend freddie mac bonuses came out, there wasn't one word in the press. everyone knows fannie mae and freddie mac even before they were taken over were government sponsored enterprises that traded on the government guarantee and afterwards, there is no question that they're government owned enterprises and yet bonuses were made there hand
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nothing was said. so if youe going to apply this kind of concept, i think that it has to be one, well thought out and it has to be applied object a very consistent basis, and in the end, i believe the private sector, while not being free of mistakes, does a better job of figuring out what people ought to be compensated at than does a federal bureaucrat and that's my opinion and i think i can substantiate enough cases where the federal bureaucracy has made mistakes that you can't make a compelling case that the private sector mistakes were so pervasive, that they need a federal, you know, you need a federal preemption, a federal regulation of salaries. don't think wage and price controls work. i think we've shown that again and again and this is another form much federal we and price controls. >> one of the things that they're obviously struggling with, and i tak your point, i agree with you, it's very
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difficult to actually do this, but one of the things they're clearly struggling with is the question of sort of the risk, you know, the sort of balance of short-term versus long-term ri, not so much where they've tan over some of the baines, but to the extent that we have now seen a demonstration that if of the banks' financial enterprises do things short term that cause massive losses that cause the government to have to step in hand that to the extent that ty believe that the payment and bow fuss structures have affected that in the balance between long term and short-term risk, you don't think there's any role for government in requiring set up better balance. i'm not -- >> no. i'll answer your question, i honestlhonestly do not. when the government gets in on its regulation, the goverent has to regulate the transfer of
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risk in a sense. so you go into a bank and you say ok, you've got to maintain these capital standards, you've got to maintain these type of loan loss standards, you've got to provide this type of protection to the insurance agency and i send if a regulator on a regular bay sits, monthly, quarterly, annually, semiannually, biannually as required for me, the government, to maintain what i think is the appropriate risk level. and beyond that, it's the stockholders that are financing that operation, because we're not talking about government financed operations or government owned operations, we're talking about government regulated operations, it is the stock who would ever holders who --tockholders who have that capital at risk, to decide what is the appropriate compensation level for somebody they think can help them achieve their proper rates of return and still maintain the government levels of risk and if the
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government thinks that institution is too risky, then step in and do something about the risk profile they want to adjust either through premium adjustments or whatever, but to go in and say this is who you can hire and how much you can pay people and i don't want somebody with a w in their last name and i want somebody in ther that will work for $100,000 a year, when all of his compitors are making $1 million a year, this is what i want you to do, i think this is wrong headed and won't work. the question the becomes, what is the appropriateevel of government supervision and government regulation of entities in our financial system. and i have a tenncy to err on the side of appropriate capital standards, appropriate risk standards, and ongoing assessment of how that institution is doing, so people in the institution looking at what they're doing, rather than going in and making business decisions for that ititution.
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that i just don't think works. >> mark chef with work force management magazine. i have a question about e-verify. do you think you'll be able to halt the contractor rule on tuesday, a could you talk a little bit about your emergency court filing? and secondly, could you comment on the enforcement piece of immigration, which presumably will have to happen in september or sometime this fall ahead of conference o reform, bause e-verify has to be reauthorized? >> well, unfortunately, we did lose that case in disict court and we have filed -- this deals with the implementation of an executive order that imposes the e-verify worker verification system on federal contractors. we challenged that in court, because we believe president bush did not have the presidential authority to impose
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such an executive order on federal contractors, because the underlying statute. well argued, said that it must remain voluntary. the district court surprisingly to us, did not agree with us, and we have filed a stay of the regulation, pending appeal. we should hear about that fairly quickly. you know, when the district court denies the stay, we'll have to evaluate our next steps. i think to your point is, while we're evaluating our litigation steps, we are also pursuing relief on capitol hill in this -- in a couple of ways, but most importantly to modify the regulation, so that it does not apply to required verification of existing employees. as you know right now, the regulation says, you must also not just verify new employees, but those employees working on the federal contract.
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well, with many companies, it's difficult to separate who's working on a contract and who's not, so a lot of companies are going to throw their hands up and say, well, we'll be forced to reverify everybody. and you can imagine what that will mean to some of these aerospace industries or computer companies that are huge, so pending possible success in the courts, we are pursuing legislative relief on the hill, and that will -- we're doing that this week and next week, fairly aggressively. part of that also would be to preempt state laws, with regard to e-verify requirements. but the real must be there, i think, is to -- nub there i think is to say reverification of existing employees will not be required. with regard to your other point, as i think you're referring to the fact that the underlying e-verify authorization, otherwise known as the pilot program, will expire by the end of september, and if congress does not reauthorize that, frankly, the regulation wog have no statutory authority, and it
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would be a nullity. however, because of that, we don't think congress will allow that to happen and we think it will be reauthorized. but if you want more information on our legislative leave we're pursuing, i can give thaw. >> we're winding down here. we'll wrap up with one more question. >> your recovery forecast, is it threatened at all by the real estate model and lenders and owners? >> no, it isn't, because as of yet, we don't know that there is -- we know there's a potentl problem, we don't know that that potential problem is an actual problem. if we were to see significant defaults in the real estate -- commercial real estate market horconsiderable illinois liquidity and inability to refinance many of the accounts that will come up for refinancing, then it would be
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very problematic, and we would have to see, but the fed is well aware of that problem we've been over to the fed to talk to them, as has many others that have been closely involved in that issue. i think the fed is continuing to monitor that issue, and i think they would be ready to step into the breach, if in fact, there was a significant lack of liquidity and therefore inabilities to roll over some of these things. so i'm guardedly optimistic. while fully aware that there is a significant sized potential issue out there. and if it were -- if it were to blow up, yeah, it could cause a reseizure in the financial markets, but the financial markets, its big decline was a result of a lot of different factors, and it was, you know, the erosion in the value of the housing assets, its pervasiveness of the housing assets, the liquidit liquidity e institutions. many of these institutions that are dealing in this market have
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been able to rebuild a bit of their capital. they're more aware of the problems, so i don't think it's going to catch them by surprise and i think that's working in our favor. definitely a potential proem, but i didn't factor into the forecast and i'm guardedly optimistic that we will not see a complete melt hedown i he -- n in that particular sector. everybody is watching. >> world journal. randy touched upon you're hopeful for the vision form for the next two years, so when you're talking about before or after the midterm election and would you elaborates on your differences with labor, guest workers, future flow of immigration? >> i know a lot of our allies in this area, particularly on the left, were hopeful that obama wod come out with a bill and senator schumer, of course, by the end of this year and go
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forward next year. i always thought, and still think with health care, lots of othe issues, the hopper is too full and secondly, the american public, i don't think frankly senator schumer or the administration understand how hard the whole issue of legalization is and how diffult it would be to pass legislation that would legalize a great many of the undocumented workers here, regardless of whatever those conditions may be. because of that, i think politically, the best time would be frankly the first year of the next term of the congress. which woulde 2011. a lot of my friends will say, you killed the effort, randy. i just read it that way. with regard to our differences, organized labor, particularly afl-cio, has always been very
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opposed to skeptical of the need for temporary worker programs. so they have decided, congress should just create a commission to study that and our view of it, that commission would be slanted towards the conclusions the afl-cio wants. the scu has been a little more open t our position, we need a robust temporary worker program, provided there are mechanisms to make sure that an employer does recruit from the domestic work force first. but the afl-cio, who was very powerful right now, wants a commission, and we don't. so that's where our disagreements lie essentially. we have talked to senator schumer about this, he knows our differences, and we've encouraged him to sort these through with organized labor and see if we can come up with a bill that provides better border security, a pathway to legalization, providing certain conditions are met, such as learning english, pain and civil
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penalty. tougher employer mid verificati requirements on employers, and also frankly, encouragement of programs to help the undocumented and others learn english. english as secondary language programs we think need to be expanded because to me, that's one of the great concerns of many of those here, or opposition to comprehensive immigration reform i think comes through as just eart sort of a visceral reaction to people who don't speak english in this country, because thereunder the mistaken assumption that people don't want to learn english. that's not true, it's the key to advancement and if wean provide some sort of federal help in that area, it would be helpful towards comprehensive reform genally and immigration nerally. >> do you find pushing for or hopeful for some piecemeal bill, like h1v. >> h1v is capped at 65,000. they didn't reach the cap
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because of the economy, which underpins our argument that in fact, it is market based and it is responsive to the economy and h2v, which is capped at $66,000 an we are negotiating those bills on separate tracks. again, our dilemma with organized labor has been, they wants to put in more and more hoops and hurdles that employers must go through before you can recruit a worker, and we understand that, but at some points, you render the program a nullity, even if you wouldn't agree to greater numbers, because you have to go through so many hoops and hurdles, get to the points where you can actually get an apatrol of a document, so that's where the details of the programs come in. we're trying to work through those. as you probably know, the hispanic caucus supports not doing things piecemeal, unless that's changed recently, but doing a whole bill, but certainly we are trying to pursue relief on separate tracks, but it's going slowly. >> one more. >> yes. you didn't talk at all about trade and there's now some talk
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that the president is going to come out with this long-awaited speech on trade and kin of clarify their position. what's your sense of what's going on there and what it's going to take to get some momentum on trade and do you have any sense of how much they are actually trying to move forward? >> i would say two things. 1, we have an international group here that specializes in that, so i kind of defer to them on the trade questions and i'm sure john murphy could give you a lot more thorough answer ton that and then also i think -- aren't we doing a major presentation here, in a couple of weeks, a week or so? >> so at that point, the chamber's entire policy on trade will be laid out i in exemplary fashion. so i'm going to pass on that one. >> thank you everyone.
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>> haw thor bill ayers is our featured guest on primetime tonight. distinguished professor at the university of i wil illinois at chicago. his latest book is "race course against white supremacy." it begins at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span2. the supreme court next week hears oral argument on campaign finance law. this weekend on america and the court, discussion on its case, hosted by the american constitution society. our program airs at 7:00 p.m. eastern on c-span.
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>> supreme court weeks starts october 4,ith a debut of our documentary on the highest court in the land. here's producer mark farcus on the project. >> today what we're doing, one of ourinal days of shooting our documentary on the supreme court, we've been in there for about two months or so in the different rooms and spaces of the court, as well as talking with -- we talked with nine of the justices now about their job to give us an inside window on how far the court operates, the procses of the court, and humanizing it, and what we're ing is just grabbing a couple final shots today and we're going to add into the documentary. >> supreme court week,tarting october 4 on c-span. >> we'll continue our review of the health care debate if congress tonight, with highlights from senate committee hearings and analysis by shala murray of the "washington post" and this wkend, a comparison of health care systems around the world wh former post reporter t.r. reid, sunday on q & a. >> the president of honduras,
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who was removed if a coup, met with secretary of state hillary clinton yesterday to discussion the political situation in his country. he spoke at a at event hosted by george washington university. this is about an hour 20 minutes. : >> welcome. welcome? is this working? welcome. i am cynthia, director of latin american studies at george washington university and delighted to welcome you to a presentation by his excellency,
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president manuel zelaya. this is the first time president zelaya is speaking at a university heren washington and we >> we would also like to welcome others in the government of honduras who are here with the president. the minister of foreign affairs, the ambassador ohonduras to the united states, the ambassador of honduras to organization of american states, the minister to the president, the finance minister, the president of the central bank, and the president of the bank commission of honduras. so we would like toelcome all of these represeatives of the honduran government with u today.
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at 5 a.m. on june 28, soldiers burst into president zelaya's bedroom. they manhandled him at gunpoint, and then they put him on a plane out of the country in his pajamas. those facts are well-known. i think less well known here in the united states is that at the same time as those events were going on, eight cabinet mbers were arrested, as was the mayor of the country's second largest city. a curfew was declared that sunday night. a subseqnt emergency decree suspende fundamental rights and scores of demonstrators were detained. tv stations were closed. the line of succession was not followed. the vice president was not put in place of the president. accordingly, this was the first
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22 occur to last more than a few days. accordingly, it is very urgent that democracy be restored in honduras, and i am honored that president zela is with us here today to present his thoughts and his recommendations for a return to democracy in honduras. as i'm mentioned, this is a university. we are respectful of diverse viewpoints at a university. so i would ask for a tone of respect here. in the case of any disruption, i am sorry to have to mention this, but this is university policy, that in the case of disruption that could result in
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removal, and potential sanctions. i would also ask you to turn off your cell phones. turn off yr cell phones and any recordings devices, please. we will be taking questions of. i believe most of you have notecards, and staffers will be coming around to pick up notecards for your questions to president zelaya. introducing the president will be our cohost, mark weisbrot. he was wonderful in helping to make this eve happen. and i'm absolutely delighted that he will be introducing the president. mark weisbrot is the codirector for the center of economic and policy research here in shington. he holds a phd from the university of michigan. he is the author of a 200 2000 s from the university of chicago press entitled social security,
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the phony crisis. he has written extensively on economic issues in latin america, in particular the international monetary fund, the debt crisis, and most recently he has been very, very insightful in his publication about the coup in honduras. so, mark. >> thank you, thank you very much, cynthia. for that introduction, and thank you for helping to organize and moderate is even. i want to thank everybody who came here today. is the mic working okay? okay. i will want to also tha dan and my colleagues at the center for economic the policy research for their help as well. and also the mc of honduras and especially for president zelaya for taking the time to come here and speak with us. i just want to provide some
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background information. cynthia already mentioned the details of the coup itself, but the world reaction to the overthrow of honduran democracy was swift and determined. the organization of american states, the general assembly of the united nations, and other international bodies unanimously called for the immediate and unconditional return of the president zelaya. the response from washington has been more ambivalent and ambiguous, characterized by inconsistency and mixed messages. the first day but from the white house did not take sides between the coup government and the democratically elected government. later statements did reject the o, but on more than one occasionur secretary of state, hillary clinton, was asked if restored the constitutional order meant bringing back the
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elected president. and she decled to say yes here on august 4, state department sent a letter to republican senator richard lugar. that was widely seen as retreating from some of the prior statements in support of the elected president. today, more than two months after the coup, quite astonishingly, the u.s. state department has yet to determine that the honduran military's overthrow of president zelaya was actually a milary coup. under u.s. law, if our government makes that determination, it would be required to cut off aid to the de facto government of honduras. and so, although a very small fraction of u.s. aid, about $18.5 million, has been cut, tens of millions of dollars more continued to flow to the dictatorship. but most disturbing of all to me has been the administration's deafening silence about the
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human rights abuses committed since june 28 by the honduran dictatorship. the shootings, the arbitrary arrests and detention of thousands of people, the police beatings and brutality against peaceful protesters, the closing down of independent radio and tv stations. all of this has been investigated, documented, and denounced by human rights organizations from throughout the world. the organization of american states inter-american human rights commission, amnesty international, human rights watch, as well as honduran and european rights organizations. yet, the obama administration has so far remained silent. i say these things not to criticize the administration, but to appeal for your help. i voted for president obama and was one of the first people on the streets on the night of the
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election celebrating his victory. we all look forward to a new foreign policy and a new foreign policy in this hemisphere as well. and i still expect to see the changes that we voted for. there's no doubt that the united ates government has the power to reverse this coup. and in the last two months, it has responded to pressure, both from within the united states and outside of the united states. 16 members of the u.s. congresssent a letter to president obama asking him to denounce the repression committed by the de facto government. and freeze the bank accounts of the coup leaders, and tonight in visas to the united states. the union of south american nations announced that it will not recognize any government that is elected under the dictatorship, because you know elections are scheduled for
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november 29. on august 17, the presidents of mexico and brazil signed a joint declaration saying the same thing. and it looks now like the organizaon of american states will also follow. all of this has been noted by the administration, and last week the state deptment moved a step closer to officially recognizing that a military coup has taken place. so i ask all of you here today, or those watching on television or on the internet, take a moment to ask president obama to live up to his promises. if you are representing a government, please try to get your government to speak out against the systematic repression in honduras. as numerous presidents in this hemisphere have noted, this coup is a threat to democracy, not only in honduras, but throughout the region.
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the days whe the military could overturn the will of the electorate were supposed to have gone away with the lt century. we cannot afford to go back to those days. esident zelaya was overthrown against powerful special interests objected to his efforts to help and empower the majority of hondurans who are poor. in his first two years, he succeeded in reducing poverty by 10%. he wanted a 60% increase in the minimum wage, and a large increase in elementary school enrollment by getting rid of school tuition fees. thesare the real reasons for the coup, which differ greatly from the fictional ones that we read and hear every day. but will let ident zelaya giveou a firsthand version of his story. history will record it as a hero for snding up to entrenched powerful interests and risking his life for democracy.
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we welcome president zelaya. [applause] [speaking in spanish] >> translator: good morning. thank you. i thank you sincerely for having extend an invitatn at gw university. it is an honor to be here with you. and when i am in the u.s., i feel like a true descendent, the teachings of the founders of this wonderful american nation
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george washington, lincoln, and all the other men and women that have fought for democracy. i would like to thank cynthia mcclintock for the university and the center for economic and pelosi research who has helped organize the event, to all of you, greetings. and i am truly interested to have this brief talk with you so that we can build and learn lessons from an event in central america at has mourned, been a cause for mourning in latin america. and that the words that i will utter will be helpful for all
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latin america to think about how to prevent any further coup d'état in the future. because learning about an event means also how to carry out a coup état. so this important to assess the good and the bad when you look at an event of this nature. democracies are a political process where in all the factors that pertain to a society are involved, the social, the economics, the cultural values. and i think the personality of the individual as the person with his own contradictions based on h existence.
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the role of the individual, specific weight the on the highlighted or analysis of the cuure, the character of the person always marks a pass in society. it is not easy to attempt to define in 20 or 30 minutes the whole events that took pce, and all the problems of the region, let alone to define specifically vhat democracy means for it. and mywn knowledge of the definition of democracy, the one that i like the most is the definition by abraham lincoln, when he said that democracy is a government of the people, for
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the people, and by the people. so it is not a government for the elite, or the government for those who hold power, nor it is not a government developed by the de facto groups. on the contrary, it is a government for the people, organized by the people, and it's also organized by the people. a well-known general from china many years ago landed in paris,
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and a journalist asked ho chi minhhat was his opinion about democracy. and the general said 200 years is short to assess democracy. we nd to wait a little longer. well, my task is not to judge democracy. my task this morning is due make some comment, and it is up to you to judge it. we will have to make an assessment not to change the democratic system, but to perfect it. as i said at the beginning, democracy is an ongoing process. it is the way of life. it is a concept that lies behind
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a political power that emerged after the french revolution, modern wld, the greeks practiced it in their city. and now it has become the paradigm of modern society. that is why, in my opinion, we have to stand by it. we have to defend it. very honestly, very sincerely. that means to analyze its weakness and its strength. that way, we can assess where the weakness lies so we can make progress. in honduras, on the 28th of
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june, barely two monthsgo a cruel coup d'état took place. it was rated by spanish rider and expert on constitutional law, and i read this online after a document that he wrote about the coup d'état. he said that coup d'état in honduras, according to him, was poorly presented by those who executed it. they did not take care of the visibility, and the international community data it has backfired for the international counity. i can say that it was obscene and not as static to pull out a
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precedent at 5 a.m. raiding his residence, shooting guns. the are 150 bullets in a metal door at my house. and i think that this spanish writer the way he qualified it, he said obscene and anti-aesthetic. there are more than a coos perhaps. so according to this writer, this broht about rejection for those pro-coup, even for the media that was promoting the coup d'état. perhaps the potential
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mpathizers turned their back on them. after the storm to my house, i was dragged in my pajamas, as we say. i was put in a plane by force, and in 40 minutes after they supplied fuel to the plane at the base, we took off. we got fuel at the base, and i was taken to the city in costa rica. inside the plane, there were three military men with guns and dressed in fatigues, and with hoods. with their heavy weapons,
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perhaps they were thinking they would throw me out of the plane. why so much force and a small plane? three military men guarding the. i asked the one that was closer to me, i asked the officer, are we overflowing? and he said i don't have any orders to advise you of anything. well, can't you find out? the truth is that 40 minutes later we were landing at san jose, costa rica. i thought it was strange that they didn't complain, but they were careful to open the door. they pulled out the steps, it's a small plane and they told me get off. so they just left me on the strip in my pajamas. what do i do now? i am in pajamas.
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i have never experienced something so bad. they just turned around, put the steps up and left. and later on, an assistant for protocol that had been called in the air received the and and came to greet me. there was a press conference for the main broadcasting stations. bbc. 200 journalists came over in less than an hour. they offered me if i wanted to change. that they could give me some clothes, a suit, but i said i wouldn't fit in the president's close. they would be short for me.
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why don't i just come out for the broadcast the same way they drug me off, and my pajamas. and they didn't tell me to get dressed, that this is a coup d'état. and to get some clothes, that we are taking you someplace. i would have accepted the invitation because they were heavily armed and they were military men. but no, they wanted to humiliate me, to show their power, their cowardice. when someone threatens you at gunpoint, and when i left my room, i had my phone in my hand and i wanted to let two or three
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people now. i wanted to talk to my wife. only my daughter was in the room, but i wanted to be able to because when they saw my cellular, they didn't want to make a call to let the people know. perhaps they surrounded me, 10 military men, with their rifles. they pointed their rifles at the. of course, they are pointing at a president. they are very nervous. i noticed they were shaking, and they were saying this is a military order. do not let go of your cellular. we willhoot you, and they were just -- they were acting crazily and i said i am the president. if you want to shoot, shoot.
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that was very uncalled for, that conflict. but i wanted to share with you those details. this was the way things developed, but my concern is with the cause of the coup. and i would like to also discuss lessons that we need to learn from this experience for latin america, for the rest of the world. first of all, the cause of the coup is potentially. the pro-coup people argument argued that i was committing a crime, presumably, because i have not been prosecuted. i had never h a trial.
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i have never had a claim against me. either privately as a businessman, as president or a politician. i have been a deputy to special congress three times and i've never had a lawsuit against me, and i have not been convicted of anything. however, they allege that there were seral crimes that i had committed, or infractions to the law. but if this is the case, honduras third world country, the prosecutors and judges are not like you're. if you just make a phone call, then trials change overnight, and that is well known, the level of corruption there, and the ingenuity and developing countries is quite sizle.
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but however they have always handled, even though they're able to just handle m just as a victim, i have never been accused, prosecuted or convicted. however, after the coup, there have 24 lawsuit and bench warrants have been issued against me. and i have -- there is a lawsuit against me for drug dealing, terrorism, corruption, the trail to my country, a violation of the illegal system up, i presume, the entire world.
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they are trying to place here in may or to humiliate me, not only myself but my family and the members of my cabinet. they all have bench warrants. there is political prosecution. they are living outside of honduras in different countries of the world. i say thas because these are some of the reasons that they come up to justify the cou and there are some other causes, and i am actually adrertising for them here in d.c. because something needs to know both sides.
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they also say that the drugs that the president of honduras was receiving came from venezuela. that it was coming biplane from chavez so that thecould sell it and send it to the u.s. and that i had a drug cartel between venezuela, honduras and the u.s. so a thousand accusations that are really unfounded and that are trying to seek the reason for the coup the truth is, that is just like looking for a scapegoat, to justify the cou they also said that the coup s due because they were trying to put a stop to an opinion poll
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that the government was developing. this is the closest thing to something rational. because we were conducting a poll on the day of the coup d'état. that day, the government with a thousand of similar orgazations had organized a public opinion poll, not a referendum, or a plebiscite. this was an opinion poll close to what the journalists do on radio tv are those undertaking a political opinion companies to understand the trends public opinions such as gallup, for instance, to raid the opinion of the population. this opinion poll is asking the
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population whether they wanted to be asked -- if they wanted to be asked about reform, which is wanted to know what the people were thinking. there are a lot of scattered communities in honduras. it is difficult to have a true opinion poll because there are no phones in some areas. the system for participation are not there, so the most effective way is to ask the community what is their opinion about
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something. this opinion poll was nonbindi nonbinding. the outcome would not bind anybody, because that is what the law for citizens dissipation indicate, that the outcome is nonbinding. it's just to find out what people are thinking. however, those in favor of the coup allege that the poll was illegal, and they were trying to do everything possible to make the process, to find illegal. i know that there may be attorneys here and we're not going to discuss whategal or illegal, but our attorneys state that the process was perfectly legal because it was nonbinding and democrat.
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and people and the government, and based on a law that has been approved in honduras. on day one of my administration, we passed a law as the congress has a session one day befe the president is inaugurated. and i stated that if the congress did not passhis law, i did not want to swear in. that i would swear in front of a judge because that's what the law says and honduras. congress doesn't swear you in. a judge will hear so congress passed a law that is called citizens for participation. and in article five, it states
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that citizens may request from the state to be consulted about matterof national or local interest. that they obviously are interested in, and that the outcome will not be binding. so ts is just to find out what the population is thinking. so the pro-coup people said that in order to avoid the consultation, they took over. they hadheir coup. because of that would mean that th president in their own
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agination, because there are some descendents of nostradamus or an astrologer that would think in the future they were predicting that after the poll, the president was going to cancel the supreme court, the national congress, that he would have a coup and he would install communism in honduras. that's why they had to have a coup in order to put a stop to those purposes that were in the president'ideas. they never asked me. when they asked me, i denied it categorically. they asked me, and order for you to rule in the say, i said no. i just want to know how people are thinking about reforms that are necessary to the legislation and the constitution. and we just want to know.
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but let me not delay the presentation. but i will give you my opinion. there are six families, only six families in the country that handle 90% of the economic activity. there monopolize everything virtually related to development. energy, telecommunications, food, fuel, financial, banking, loans. and those families do control
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the -- used to control the congress because they fd the congress members, one of my biggest surprise is that found out, one of the families had a group of senators that were stronger, actually house representatives that were more powerful than the president's group, party rather. and that they were being kept on salary. honduras is a representative democracy, and many times house member has to spend a great deal of money and campaigning and adds. and because the state does fot
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fund campaigns, they have to resort to those who have money. and they end up being their employees in the national congress. in honduras, the congress is the true source of power, not the president. the president has limited power. the congress appoints a the attorney general, the supreme court justices. i criticized the appointment of the supreme justices of the 15 justices that there are virtually seven were named by the main banks. so the majesty justices defend their interests of the banks and their claims.
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and we believe that that should not be so in a country that is so poor that it needs more independence of their branches of power. to have to debate and thathe congress should not be associated to those interests. so in the three and a half years of my government, congress has always been associated with those that they appoint. the justices and the prosecutors. now they will be appointing the commission does not commissioner for human rights, for competitiveness, for the
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environment, the attorney general is also named by the congress, and he is now an attorney working procure. so the power in honduras directly related to those that are being appointed, it is not like in the u.s. that the justices are named for life. and you need whole process for them to be removed from their positions. and right now, these six powerful families, a i don't mind someone being economically
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powerful. they can make as much money as they want to. that's there is free market, but they are using their money to deprive others from their own rights o to perform a coup d'état. these six families are now handling and maneuvering the the branches of power. they have been privatized because right now the president of the congress is now the president of the republic since proclaimed. there is an article in the constitution that says no honduran can be thrown out of the country. and another article says that in the constitution of succession will occur only when there is absolute absence of the president, i.e., by death,
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incapacitated by accident. but those pro-coup say that there was absolute absence because he was in costa rica. that's why they named -- we named the president of the congress. beuse there is absolute absence of the president if the interpretation could be made like that, then no president could leave their home, because if he turns around someone else is taking over. so that is an insult to the intelligence to seek to legalize or justify a coup. the families that i am mentioning to you have been documented in books. there is a book out eight months
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ago. economic power in honduras, and there is a picture on the cover that is the national congress. we have to get that book to show you and the names of the families are documented. i will not bow down on details, but the report -- there is a report b the ouste government online that you can read about their names. so this is a country in central
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america that is developing and trying to overcome the large social problems that athletics it. 65% of the population is below the poverty line, a country most pronounced in equalities. it's in the americas. and it is the third poorest economy in latin america. in the three and a half years during my administration, i executed several reforms. they were not structural because the constitution doesn't allow me to. but theyere important witn the free market economy.
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these were reforms to the neoliberal model, that i believe has some advantages but some huge disadvantage has been applied in latin america and to the shington consensus it virtually fail because instead of developing latin america has made wealth to accumulate, has caused corruption. so reforms should not be feared. they should be part and parcel of the normal process. within the reforms, i have been fighting for more economic freedom. that means less monopoly, less monopoly. the main economic activities in
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honduras are monopolies and ogg loley's. and at the end of the day they were good, we could do spend addict quickly, but for us they deteriorate the system, the market, they cause poverty, marginality. they are protected by this state itself, its laws, concessions, discourse, exceptions. and this type of economy led us to look for new laws within the market. we took monetary action. we reduced the banking allowance
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so that the banks can use more money for development. they will also exchange measures, and we did not seek to tax more people, to collect. and there are many companies that are not paying taxes. so there were monetary polies put in place and fiscal policies, and that brought about the fact that the banking interest rate came dow from 24% to 8%. so when the whole banking system based on the actions we were
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taking, produced economic increase that during the first year of my administration went from 3% to 7% of growth, we were growing at 7% creation. 10% of agriculture products. some countries in central america, they are importing food from the u.s. and canada when we have enough land and ability to grow, but we are importing pork, for instance, from canada.
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and the energy we are importing from oil producing countries from salvador. we have thermal energy potential. we could be generating energy for central america, but everything is based on oil because it is easier to buy a machine that you buy it. you turned it on and then you can generate power and the next day you can sell it. but if you set up a geothermal company or a hydroelectric old company, it takes seven years to
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build and you could only see the profits of seven years later except for the businessman and the banks. it is easy to finance the oil use than the alternatives. so all of these economic policies, we started to modify. the growth rate was 6.1% in 2007. our second year, it went from -- it wasctually at 6.5%, and on the third year, even during the wall street crisis last year, we grew at 4.5%. so when there is growth there is reduction of perty for t first time.
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we experience extreme poverty reduction. 40%, to 30% in one year. and the reduction had been before 1% in 10 years, and i was able to do a ruction of extreme poverty of 10% in one year. but i had the banks working, which they don't like. they likeo charge, not to work. they have to lend money. we were supervising the lending. i need to cut checks in order to get to the questions and answers. thank you. we were able to get the best
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indicators socially and also per capita income went from 1000 to 1402 years. so that is a huge process, and we implemented social proams, because when there is growth, there is more tax collection and we were able to put in place health and education programs. solidarity network. we put in place. pdople that are leading in extreme poverty, that the heat once in a whi, and that allowed us to earn for instance, last year three award from the
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work bank interconnectivenes ind dynamics of implementation, business. we had a good joint venture with taiwan, with brazil, and we opened up the economy for more competitiveness. and i know those that have the monopoly do not like itecause they do not want to share, but to accumulate. and when we mpened up foreign policy to reach to countries that honduras was completely isolated from, i.e., venezuela, ecuador, brazil, argentina, then
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foreign policy was great. cuba had a program that teaches people who are illiterate how to read and write. there are shelf campaigns they have done 33000 operations in honduras for those who cannot pay, their eye operation. they could do it. also, chavez has held honduras and all countries with energy without having to ask for it. this is a fallacy that they did, the coup had to do with chavez. chavez has now military or
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onomy influence. the country that has migration, economic and cultural influence is the u.s. but they have used chavez name to say that due to chavez's influence, that's why the coup took place. but chavez was just socially with programs. these are the main elements that precipitated the coup. the effects of the coup have been extraordinary. this is the first time the whole un, president of the un contacted a coup publicly. the obama administration could
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do other things, but we believe that there is more to be done. i will be meeting with secretary clinton tomorrow, and we will have an opportunity to discuss some ideas tht need to be developed, that they -- president had a role of mediation. that document was created and the pro-coup do not accept it. that is a challenge. the document seeks assumption and a small group of those pro-coup in honduras that have excepted and is rejecting it.
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i think that the first country in the world cannot put it prestige on the line and submit to a small group of people that are pro-coup and do not accept the opinion of the international community. this is like a first matching of democracy during the obama administration. as far as domestic issues for honduras people, having acted in an extraordinary fashion. they have been resisted for 64 days in a very heroic way.
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they have never done that before. of course, there is repression. i have one of the mayors here at has been ousted of the second city of honduras. he was ousted as i have. he has to come to the un. there are director of global, that have been closed, the radio station has been closed. and they are threatened, their people detained, and that is still the only one that is independent, providing information about the resistance. there is torture that has been documented. . . provided a
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report. there are 1500 @@@@ x there is repression. the state department has not made a statement about human rights violations. amnesty international has. human rights watch has. and we hope in the nextew hours, not just the declaration about the coup but the statement of the
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stateepartment of human rights are apparent. lastly, i would like to say that our goal at this time after the coup is to learn a few lessons that all the citizens of the world have a need for so that these events may not happen again. and the possibility of reversing peacefully or to restore the state of law. the international community doesn't have efficient mechanisms to make a coup a ime, and, immediately trial and sentence those who
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perpetrate it. this is a weakness of the international community and international law. secondly the role of the armed forces has to be reviewed because if the role of the armed forces and its leaders, that is able to be core are uped by the elites, then this will turn into violence. if they will use the armed actions, to put an end to democracy, then thwill be violence and that will make the security of all people in latin america and the hemisphere will become weak if there is, there are clandestine groups that we had gotten rid of from t '60s, iran-contra operations,
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are, we have got rid of, but if we can continue to bring conflict to our countries, we didn't have to go through assassinations and killings and tortures. but if this happens again, then our peoples from canada to, to the south pole will continue to experience violence. we need to avoid that. democracy is a supreme good of the society. this is the way we can defend our freedom. this will is how the u.s. was able to pick a descendant of an african immigrant as their president. democracy can not be, and it is actually the single best
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way we have to fight for poverty and to remove poverty if our people lose the hope that democracy brings about, then we will have lost our hope for the next century, the century that should bng about the dreams of our patriots and the independence of our countries. [applause] >> thank you so much. thank you very much.
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and, i think we @ave time for a few questions befor the media events. the most common question was about the specific steps you would like to see the obama administration take now. i know you already mentioned of the denunciation of the human rights abuse are own going, if there are other steps you would like to see the administration take, to restore democracy in honduras. [speaking spanish] >> translator: i have a an appointment with secretary clinton tomorrow. and, some of the issues that
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will be discussed are precisely not just the characterization of coup'etat which the state department has a recommendation but, also the outcome of the mediation by president arias that is being weakened by the rejection of the procu regime after they accepted it. after the u.s. involved self into a solution to the problem byosing a mediator. we accepted it. and now the outcome has not been taken into account and they're not taking th administration seriously. and also human rights, the violations to human rights are unhea of.
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these are the habits of fascists governments, preworld war ii. we had not seen events like this, the 21st century is more sophisticated, more technology. more freedom of the press. theqfraóiçóñrate0q0v0x1s10=50a6
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'80s. he has trials awaiting in spain and in the u.s.. he was the leader of the death squad and he is now advising his administer for safety for the de facto government. in were 3,000 people demonstration and the police apprehended two young people. they disappeared and on the next day they threw them dead and they had 24 stab wounds on their back. their fingers were crashed.
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and they had plastic bags in their mouth. andhen they apprehelped a teacher and threw them out with the same features. the people doesn't have any weapons. the weapons are in the possession of the military. now the teachers, and compasinos have been, have not been working. our own strike force 64 days. these are all issues that we ll discuss with secreta clinton. >> i would also like to recognize the two ambassadors here whom i know. ambassador alvarez from the
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embassy in venezuela and ambassor from the embassy of brazil. if there are other ambassadors here, i'm sorry, i don't recognize you, but we welcome your presence and we're honored that so many distinguished officials at the oas and from embassies could come to hear the president. a second question that was asked, was about yr interest in changes in the constitution in honduras, and, your vision for politics in honduras in the future at that time. >> translator: as i was stating before, the changes
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that we have introduced were of an economic, social, nature. that within the washington consensus, and the neoliberal model are necessary to develop our countries and we are accomplishing the best development indicators. but we reached a conclusion that is the best way to perfect the democratic system is direct participation from the citizens. and when it comes to the large, domesc issues, now there is a debate on hlth in the u.s., and, when it comes to domestic issues, we do, and in many countries that, direct democracy is being used.
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we go straight the people. we don't rely on the president or congress, but we ask the people. and we be our decisions on that. in europe, for instance, if a decision needs to be made, they would have the e.u., submit a referendum because the countries did not, the presidents did not make that decision themselves. when the euro was proposed, they submitted it to the population and in great britaiand they didn't want to and they stayed with the sterling pound. because some officials may betray the will of the people. so in honduras they have a plebscite and a rerendum. but that is not taken seriously by the people. so what i did i changed that so that people could give
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their opinion. the they will be iced for the people to participate democratically. but, based on this law, you can not ask about budget or social programs or tax matters, or international treaties. what is the use of the law? then i said no, this law needs to be changed. and they say that i am attacking the constitution because i want to ask the people if they want this law to be changed. it is the people who can change the law and the constitution. i as a president could not
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do it. i could not issue a decree to change it. there's another article in the constitution that states that the practice of power can not amend the constitution but the people can, because the people approve the constitution. so, we wanted to ask the people whether they wanted to be asked, whether they wanted to change t constitution. that's what we were asking. >> thank you again. a third question is that given, a third question is that given that elections are scheduled in honduras for november, it seems illogical that the de facto government would be so resistant to a mediation and
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to your return. should we understand this in terms of the ongoing repression, or what exactly? [speaking in native tongue] >> translator: yesterday i was at the oas and there are several ambassadors here, about 70% of the ambassadors made a statement yesterday and there are resolutions from unsor, union of countries of south america and there a statements by the central american countries and resolutions.
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the president of mexico has stated and also the minister of foreign affairs, and, likewise from brazil and countries that have made a statement outside the multilateral entities from those the u.s. have also made a statement. they have sted that ty will not recognize government that is, the product of a coup, as long as the president that has been elected by the people
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is restored to power, and the coup d'etat is reversed, precisely the because the president himself, myself, who, i am the product of a political process, of a liral nature, very encompassing. there is a whole series of actions that guaranty a clean and transparent process. the population is now being repressed. those who are against the regime are repressed. one of the candidates for the presidency has his arms broken, and is in a hospital because he has been attacked in a demonstration. this is a presidential candidate. there are mayors, as pedro
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sula mayor that has been ousted by force. and the nephew of t current de facto government has been appointed as the mayor. and he wasn't accepted and he had to be replaced. and, other labor leaders that were working on the poll, campisnos, indigenous people have been captured and their rights to participate have been violated. so my question is the same that america, as a continent is askingtself. can the pro--coup regime guaranty democracy when they
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are repressing the large part of the population and members of my party and others who were working on the poll? is it transparent this type of election? could it be transparent? and the oer question is, the coup have been, six months before the election. now we're four months away, but when the elections were called for in may, then the coup happened the next month. so is this an action to set up a fraudulent action and, that it will be made easier by removing the elected president from the country? can they guaranty clean elections? will one of the most
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politically important forces is being repressed and there are no human rights guaranties, or guaranties of democratic participation? the people of the americas are speaking against the process and, when hondura was excluded from the oas, it was so that it could come ba later and we 2/3 of the vote and, we're not able to get it. so the, the regime out of a de facto government will not be recognized, and the elections, if the government is not restored, if the social agreement to carry out elections are not a good
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out come but it will be a deepening of the social crisis. >> unfortunately we are now 15 minutes past the hour that the president is scheduled to meet with various media. but, i am hoping vy much that this presentation has helped, to end repression in honduras and the return of democracy to honduras and your return to democracy. i would like as a token of our appreciation -- [applause]eo >> tonight we continue our conversation on books. we'll talk to educator, author andietnam war
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protestor william ayers. his book is "racecourse, against white sue 50 premcy." we spoke with him along with the coauthor in june. watch "booktv" in depth at president p.m. eastern. >> we'll continue our review of the health care debate in congress withighlights from senate committee hearings and analysis by shailagh murray of "the washington post" and this weekend a comparison of health care systems around the world with former post reporter, tr reid, sunday on "q & a". >> as the debate over health care continues, c-span's health care hub is a key resource. go on-line, follow the latestweet, video ads and links.
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watch the latest events including town hall meetings and sha your thoughts on the issue with your own citizen video, including video from any town halls you've gone to. and there more. at,/health care. >> an event with the head of the small business administration, karen mills. she announces t award winner for national minority small business person of the year. this is about half an hour. >> ladies and gentlemen, please welcome your national director, david hinson. [applause] >> good morning. how was breakfast? very good. we are at day two. i want to thank you again for coming to our 27th an y'all med week conference. i hope over the last day day everyone is able to meet
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somebody new, share business ideas and hopefully, get some good input on how you're going to grow your business. as i said yesterday, reaching economic parity, to reach economic parity we need to grow minority businesses larger and faster. to do this we must think globally. we must develop strategic alliances and we must think about mergers and acquisitions. today's opening ssion from the white house to main street, will focus on the administration's commitment to insuring the inclusion of minority businesses in american recovery and reinvestment act. now there arever $60 biion of federal contracts that are still available under the act. $60 billion. so there is a tremendous opportunity on the federal side. companies need to be ready to take advantage of these opportunities. like magic johnson said yesterday, be readyo you don't have to get ready when
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the economy turns around. now i would like to introduce the next speaker, mr. ed deseven. mr. december seven, supports the vice on recovery efforts omb he lose the white house efforts to make sure the recovery act is plemented quickly and effectively through interagency coordination. this topic is something i'm sure everyone in this room will be interested in. so ladies and gentlemen, mr. ed deseven. [applause] >> good morning. i'm delighted to be here this morning. one of my favorite hotels in washington, d.c., to sho you how old i am, the first time i was here, it was when jimmy carter was talking about whiing inflation now.
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it was a long time ago. and i lrned much about the power of wall street at that time. i was sitting next to my boss, and, there were powerful people from all over america, mayors and governors and congressman and senators, and there was one fellow, kind of balding and a little bit, a little bit kind of stooped over. he was sitting there. about halfway through, somebody came and gave him a note. and, and he went, he scribbled something on the note a handed it back. and at the end of the session i said to him, who is the guy over there that got the note? it i dale horowitz fro solomon brothers. that was back before solomon brothers had merged. he just bought $1.2 billion with the new york city notes. with one stroke of the pen. that was my introduction to the idea that commerce, that finance, is a powerful tool
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r all of us. i've been a small businessman, at least three times. i've learned a lot of lessons about venture-capital. home in my garag are spaces for the three very high-class porsches that i lost learning about venture-capital. [laughter] i'm not sure those spaces will ever fill up but i have some old stock certificates that i would be happy to give you, not sell you, in some companies. but i've been a, been a successful entrepreneur three times. i've, my, the first company i founded is a company called public financial management incorporated and pfm is still in existence. it is the largest financial advisor to state and local governments in america and it is no longer a small business. that's the good news. the bad news i don't own any of it anymore. i sold out, one of those
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merger and acquisition deals. they showed me the money. said thank you very much. but the it is an excitifg thing to develop and grow a company and, what we know about developing and growing companies, is they're the strong ones. they're the ones that will do what i takes to make things work. so it is much to the advantage of the federal government, in the things that we do, to have the energy of, not just the small businesses but those that are headed by women, those that are headed by minorities of various kinds. those are headed by veterans, people who really want to be ab to, to show that they can take the things that they have learned, take the life lessons that they learned, and turn them into success on the job for the client. that is what we care about. that is the thing we care about. the recovery act itself, and i won't bore you because i'm sure you have all gone to conferences where people
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given you the big powerpoint slides and lectured but the nature of the recovery act. the recovery act is $787 billion. it breaks down fundamentally three pieces. 300 billion, goes to, it is a. 289 blion of tax relief. you want to look at some of those tax provisions because there are different kinds of tax provisions for businesses that may be helpful to you. i am not a expert o those tax provisions. i encourage you to read up about them. talko your accountant. talk to your tax advisor and see if they're helpful to you. that is 289 billion out of 787 billion. the balance, roughly, $499 billion, a significant portion of that goes to individuals and to states in form of what we used to call transfer payments. that is, medical assistance, the medicaid money that goes out. money for education that goes to the states andhen down to the school districts. money for unemploymt
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compensation. money to extend cobra benefits. these are elements of a safety net, both for individuals, and for governments. money that was designed to rescue, as the vice president says, to rescue the economy from the great recession. that's his term, the great recession. and i have a slide that i sometimes use that shows previous recessions and it shows this one. and there is this blue line that just plummets almost 6% loss in jobs. but we know the job generators are small businesses, are minority business, are the people in this roo so how do we engage them in the conversation? how do we reach out to them? luckily, president obama, vice president biden, secretary locke, karen mills who i think you will hear later on today, are committed not just one time, not just two times, but committed to going out 200
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times over the next 60 days. we've already started the process. itsed to be 90 days now the clock is still ticking. this is one of those 200 events. we're going to go all over the country. i willo to some of them. this is only my second. but i'm going to go to some of them. other members of the cabinet will two to some of them in addition to secretary locke. vice president will go t some of them. he went to one the other night. the message we want to carry not just to the federal contracting community, and david is very correct, we had about 70 billion in federal contracts. that is dod, the department of interior, department of interior if i'm not mistaken has 3400 projects throughout america. these are the kinds of projects rehabilitating parts of our national forest. parts of our park syste forest belongs to the agriculture department, that are spread all over the nation. and are easily accessible we
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believe locally, federal contracts accessible locally. i'm sure you know fedbiz.ops i sure you see the 22 to 2300 contracts on there. we have 60, 70 billion to be aworded in federal contracts. not just us making sure federal contracts get in the right hands and get them on timely bis. that people have information about them, that is not enough. we encourage you, and we're going to do a top downs, bottom up here, we encourage you to talk to yr state and local contract community. we're going to do the same thing. david and i were just talking about it before this session. the vice president is going to be sending a letter, an informational letter but also a letter with won tent about the availability of businesses within a particular state to take on, to take on the
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responsilities of contracting whether it be as van jones will talk about r weatherization, or continued highway contracts or other energy contracts and grants that are out there, or even contracts where people who have won opportunities through competitive procurements, will be encouraged to, a, be minorities themselves, be small businesses, be disadvantaged, be women, or latina, be late teen no or latino-owned. get the a or o. in the right place. i picked up a copy of late teen ma magazine ony way in -- latina. th importance of getting informationut to state governments or local governments, a very significant amount o the procurement, more than $70 billion and i can't tell you perfectly because, some of it is pass-threw money goes to locals from states and states don't sign up for it and so on and it differs
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from state to state. but the game, the game will be both at the federal level and at the state and local level. so if you talk to those procurement folks in your localities and in your states we'll be doing the same thing, coming down from the top. we'll be encouraging them. we'll be watching them. we'll be gathering information about how they do. we kw that our record so far in the recovery act is okay. about 10% have gone to sdbs. about 10% of the contracts. not quite 10% of the contracts that have been let so far. not quite 10 billion have gone to sdbs. somewhere in the mid 20s have gone to small businesses. it really does change as we let very large contracts. it will go from 27 to 24 very quickly, believe it or not. because we're leting contracts on the billion dollar range and $800 miion ran. but we're committed to staying on top of and watching the numbers. numbers are only the tip of the iceberg. if you don't have information, i you don't have access, the we have a
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problem. so i encourage you to use the mechanisms that the commerce department and small business administration have provided to get that information. use the people in the field. if there are eda representatives in your area, make them do their job, not just for eda but also for the business community that is here today. i'm going to be measured on several statistics when i get done. and, my job will be fundamentally fished about 13 months from now. i've never had a term appointment before, but i think this one is pretty close to it. about 13 months from now they will measure me on five things. and i've got these things on my wall and they're measurements that i signed up for. number one, get the money out quickly. as i mentioned earlier, right now, overall, in the aggregate, we've put o in contracts, and, grants to states about $200 billion. by the end o this month it
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will be 30, end of september will be $230 billion. we've also put out in tax benefits about 60 billion. so we're approaching the $300 billion mark, getting the money out. we're doing okay. the second thing is, get the money under contract properly. and properly means two things to me. that we get contracts in the hands of people who can form them, and peopl weant to perform them. as quickly as we can. number one. and number two, that we avoid elements of waste, fraud and abuse. as, well as we can do it, we manage the risks associated with that. first part of that involves this community. if i have done a good job getting the money out as my team have done a good job, my whole team of six, there are six of us that do this. my whole team of six has done a good job of getting money out and it hasn't gone to peopl who most effectively serve the nee of the federal government, then i will have failed in
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that category. in addition i have to build reporting infrastructure. i have to make sure we have proper measurements in place and finally maintain the support of the american people. we believe the support of the american people comes from having people like you from all over america go back and say, you know, this recovery thing might work for us. let's see if we can find a way to make it. and we think it might work for america. i think you will start to see that blue line, that comes down on my chart, starting to turn. it is turning too slowly. until we get back to the point, and it is goi to take two or three years at a minimum. we looked at prior recessions and we find that it can be as long as 38 months before you gain back all the jobs that you have lofted. people talk about a v. they talk about a u. they talk about a w, god help us. these are, got help us. god help all of us. whoop, whoop
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doest want to here. that was not a reference to prior president. [laughter] i wish i had been that cute. i wish i would have thought of it. what that means that the recovery starts, and thdn abates and then starts again. so it has the shape of the letter w. i would never, seriously, really try to avoid, we have too much to look forward to look back. we keep our ice ahead. we want to maintain the support of the american people to understand that the fact that we may be, uld be, possibly, might be at the end of a recessionary period is interesting information. but until we put people back in jobs, and we have more people in jobs, than we had before this started, i know the president won't think we're successful but that we haven't even begun the success of this operation. so i want to thank you for the hard work that you do throughout america in growing small businesses, and as a former small businessman, i know how hard
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it is. i stayed up late at night, working with and working with quicken and quickbooks and things like that to try to do all of the tasks that i had to do. i want to thank you for the things that you do and i want to let you know, if you need any help from our office, from the vice president's office, let david and his team know. we try to work through the agencies. we try not to bypass people like david and people like secretary locke and deputy secretary hightower in these areas. i bring greeting today from the white house and i want to thank you very much. [applause] >> thank you, ed. next i would like to introduce you to special advisor to the white house for green jobs, enterprise an innovatn. mr. van jones is an award-winning author and advote for human rights on environmental issues.
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he has and continues to shake the administration's energy and clite initiatives. yesterday he talked out three emeing and promising industries, green jobs, smar grid technology, and health care i-t. not only are these industries growing but they are also the right thing to do for us and our planet. today mr. van jones will speak more in depth about the use of green technology, something all of our businesses should know, at least a little bit about. ladies and gentlemen, i'd like to introduce to you, mr. van jones. [applause] >> good morning. good morning. y'all eat? good. i had mine back there. first of all i just want to thank david hinson.
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you know, personnel is policy. so when you see someone like him selected to lead an fort like this it shows level of seriousness that we have to make sure that we actually begin to meet some of the goals we've long had as a country to grow equal opportunity through both federal contracting and all our federal activities. i want to take a moment to give david hinson, a round of applause. he is doing a extraordinary job [applause] we'r lucky to have him. i also want to thank ed deseve. he is our general, when it comes to meeting our goals with regard to the recovery package and, he is a modest man. i just want to point out a couple things. first of all, let's not forget that when the president signed the recovery package in mid-february, people were still talking about the
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great danger, not of a great recession, but of a great depression. let's not forget, that, when the president was sworn in january, all of the economists, right, left and otherwise, were fearful that we were headed into a deflationary spiral from which nobody could figure out how we could ever recover. and it would be global. nobody is talking about those kinds of catastrophic out comes now, and it has to do singularly with the leadership of president obama, his willingness to take bold action and his willingness to bring in people like ed deseve to make sure the action he takes is effective. let's give ed deseve a round of applause working day and night for the success of this presidential recovery package [applause] lastly i want to thank you. you know, good to come to these conferences. good to meet folks.
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get all those business cards you're going to forget to input in your system. shake some hands. maybe do a deal. butt some point you're going to be back in your cars, back on airplanes. and you're going to be, concerned. and it takes courage to be in your situation. it takes courage to be in your position because you represent the forward thrust of all of the efforts of the last century for equal opportunity and quality. we fought in the last century for the right, for a qualified person to get a job. you now stand for the idea that qualified people should be able to give jobs, and that is where we have to go and where we have to go together. magic johnson said if you want to be ready, stay ready. part of staying ready, to my comments here, is not just
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being ready inside but knowing what is the world ready for? as sma business people, as emerging entrepreneurs, and business leaders, you can be very, very ready, to sell eight-track tapes, but the world is not ready for that right now. and don't try to upgrade to cds because they're not going nowhere either. we're now livingn a world of mp3s, downloads, ipods. and so it is not just about bein ready internally it is about having an eye on the horizon to figure out what is the world ready for? we have a president that understands what the world is ready for, certainly what amica is ready for, is a revolutionary transformation our energy system. if you look at our vulnerabilities now, so many of them converg on the fact that we are basically using eight-track tape level technology to power america.
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we are in danger now, our scientts tel us of coing the planet, baking the plat with greenhouse gases because we're qtill using fossil fuels. still using remains of dead dinosaurs to power ourselves in the 21st century. and that we have an opportunity now to diversify our energy portfolio, to use our traditionah fossil fuels better, smarter, cleaner but also to diversify into renewable eney and use ss energy and to have more work, more wealth and better health as a result. that is the forward thrust of the president's agenda. and it, directly creates opportunity for you, because, in order for us to meet our energy and our security and our climate goals, we are goin to have to retrofit millions of buildings, up grade them so they less energy. we'll have to put you will millions of solar panels.
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that is thousands of contracts, millions of jobs. we're going to have to manufacture wd turbines and put them up, thousands of contracts, millions of jobs. we're going to have to grow biofuels. thsands of contracts. ultimately millions of jobs. this green jobs direction, these 21st ctury job contract and entrepreneural opportunities are represented in our recovery package. because i don't have a lot of time i want to focus in on just one aspect of our recovery package because i think it probably hits the majority of you in terms of immediate opportunities. then i will let you get back to your morning. our recovery package as ed deseve said, $787 billion. 8 billionf that is for, -- 80 billion is for things that are green and or clean energy. smart grid, smart batteries, solar power, wind power, biofuels, land restoration,
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the whole bit. in that 80 billion, about 50 billion is in one department, one department, one agency, the department of energy. now, it's important for you to know that because when the president talks about building this clean energy economy, and he talks about creating these jobs and opportunities of tomorrow, he has made a bet tt the department of energy will be the main motor, the main engine. so when you talk about smart grid, the money is there. when you talk about smart battery, the money is there. when you talk about weatherization, energy efficiency for buildings, the money is there. when you go down the line, a strategic focus on the department of energy, understanding it, should reward your effort. specifically for small businesses. let me, many of you may not
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be starting an advanced battery division tomorrow. let me focus on energy efficiency for buildings, for homes. 2008, the federal government spent $200 mlion to trofit and weatherize and upgrade the homes of poor people, low-income people to cut their energy bills. so grandma wouldn't have to be spending money she could be spending on food just to stay warm in the winter, cut energy bills and help people, $200 million. in the recovery package, the president put 5 billion for those same activities. so you're going from 200 million to five billion. there are, is a opportunity there for to grow firms, to grow workers, to be a part of supply chains. why? theenius of the president's commitment to
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energy efficiency and weatherization is simple as this. those humble, hard-working energy efficiency dollars, everybody talks about the sexy solar dollars, that is what everybody wan to get excited about. they swoon. solar panels. it is like -- [laughter] show another one. some weird, you know. the reality is that many of the jobs in the near term will not be about cutting-edge technologies to create new energy, it will be about off the shelf technology, deploying it to use less energy today the. what am i talking about? i'm talking about those humble, hard-working energy efficiency dollars called, caulking guns, insulation, high-performance windows and doors. replacing those old, inefficientoilers and furnaces with new high performance ones. taking out those refrigerators use 10 times too much energy, and putting
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in the new stuff. maybe sticking in smart meters in those homes as well. those are jobs that small businesses can get involved in. you have got to buy the insulation from somebody. the city has got to buy those windows from somebody. those workers have to be hired by somebody to go into those homes. and the president is excited, and the vice presint is also excited, about this effort because, those humble, hard-working energy efficiency dollars work triple, double, and overtime for this country. why do i say tt? tell you a little story, give you an example. suppose you have a worker, would-be worker, either, has skills or wants them. you give that worker a dollar, guess what, you are now hired, you are a part of this energy efficiency effort. that worker stands up, that dollar just cut unemployment. helps ed'sumbers. when that worker walks
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across t street and she starts to retrofit a home, she blows in that chroo, non-toxic insulation, she replaces thoseindows and those doors and does all that other work, that same dollar just cut unemployment, just cut grand mama's energy bill. because with the off of the shelf technology that we have, 30, 40, 50% reductions in energy bills are possible right now. that monly is literally going out the window. it can be captured and turned into work and wealth opportunities in energy efficiency. so that dollar just worked double time. cut unemployment, cut an energy bill. gets better. often right down the street there is coal-fired power plant and power station having to work, 30, 40, 50% too hard because all these homes are to, 40, 50% too wasteful. you cut those energy bills, you just cut the pollution coming out of those power plants you just cut greenhouse gas
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emissions. you just cut asthma. you took asthma inhalers out of little girls and little boys pockets. sohat same dollar that cut unemployment, that cut, the energy bill, just cut pollution and asthma. and then, mackenzie says it will pay for itself in just a few years because of those energy savings. so this is an area you will see tremendous growth and focusn, from this administration. because there are some good things that we can do, by focusing on cutting energy bills for people, creating jobs, cleaning up the air, and helping us to meet our climate goals. what i want you to, what i want to leave you with, is this simple insight and i hope it will transform your company. i hope it will transform your life. i have hope it will put you on a trajectory to be with the mp3 crowd. over the next four, eight and beyond yrs and it is a very simple insight. everythi that is good for
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the environment, everything that is goo for our climate policy, everything that is good for energy independence, is a job. it is a contract. it is a entrepreneural opportunity. if you can get that light bulb, complex light bulb or led light bulb go off in your hd, every single time you hear an administration official talking about meeting our environmental and energy goals, you should be thinking how does my company create value to soe that problem? how do we get in there and get those dollars and become the leading firm in our area in energy efficiency? how do we become the main marketers for installing solar? how do we get in, they talk about the sma grid, on the front end to make sure as we put up those smart meters, that help people manage the energy in their homes, wedding information technology to energy
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technology for the first time, that we are in a position to do it world class, and to, go forwards, as you have done so brilliantly in this tough period, through thi tough period into the coming revival of the american economy, not just having gotten a job at some point in your life, but being a part of the next great effort to give millions of americansobs in the clean energy economy. thank you very much. [applause] >> please, one more round of applause for van jones and ed deseve. this concludes our morning event. i would like to invite everybody go to the ribbon cutting for the b2b activity at the ex-poe hall. you can go out the doors to the left and we'll join you
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at the ex-to hall. thank you very much. -- ex-to hall ♪ .
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>> less sonts in leadership from the former head of cecom and retired middle east enjoy. tony zinni how the leaders can best respond to the trends that shape the world. he discusses his bkith former fema director, julius becton. on afterrd words. >> what is the best way to secure america? tom ridge takes inside look at terrorist threat. his tenure as director of homeland security and what led to his resignation. part of a three-day "booktv" weekend. saturday on c-span2. >> coming in october the c-span's original documentary on the nation's highestourt, part of supreme court week. this is part of what you see. >> mr. chief justice and may
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it please the court, the government concedes that the destruction of documents in anticipation of a proceeding was not a crime in the fall of001. based upon -- >> something different is going on here than what goe on in the capitol building or in the white house and you need to appreciate how important it is to our system of government. >> this is the highest court in the land, and the framers created it after studying the great law-givers in history and taking a look at what they thought worldwide was important for the judicial branch to do. >> i put in as much blood, sweat and tears on the little cases as i do on the big ones. we don't sit here to the make the law, to decide who ought to win. we decide who wins under the law that the people have adopted. >> you would be surprised by the high level of collegiality here. >> if there are four of the nine of us who want to hear
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any of these cases, we'll hear it. we're here to decide things. the job is to decide. we decide. >> why is it that we have an elegant, astonishingly beautiful, imposing, impressive structure? it's to remind us that we have an important function, and to remind the public when it sees the building, of the importance and the centrality of the law. i think the danger is that sometimes you, can come into a building like this, and think it is all billion you, or that you're importat, and, that is something that i don't think works with well with this job. >> supreme court week, starting october 4th, on c-span. >> the head of the centers for disease control and prevention today said the
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h1n1 swine flu has not yet mutated meaning the virus has not become more dangerous since it first appeared earlier this year. this cdc briefing from atlanta is 30 minutes. >> what i would like to do this afternoon is give you an update on some of the recent developments with h1n1 influenza. and, just one second. . .


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